By John Carlin 16th November, 2014


Cage Warriors 74 delivered an action-packed card on Saturday night from the Copper Box Arena, Olympic park, London. Of the 12 bouts that took place there were 9 finishes and 3 hard-fought decisions, from knockout knees to triangle chokes, it was an excellent offering from Europe’s premier MMA organization.


The night saw one champion newly crowned and another defend their title, as Pannie Klanzad and Nicolas Dalby both ended the night as world champions.


The night started out in explosive fashion as Anna Elmose took only 19 seconds to dispose of Emma Delaney. Elmose came out of the blocks aggressively and after backing Delaney up to the cage, landed a well placed knee, before stepping in and landing a vicious left elbow to the head which dropped Delaney to her knee, clearly badly hurt from the blow Elmose sensed the finish, unleashing a series of unanswered left hands which gave the referee no choice but to intervene and bring a halt to the contest.


Main Card 1


The first fight of the first main card of the night saw James Hurrell take on Carl Kinslow. After an exciting first round, which saw Kinslow as the aggressor, backing Hurell up to the cage landing some nice left body shots and a couple of strong left hooks and dropping the 6’7 Englishman towards the end of the first round, Hurrell looked fired up in the second, and after landing a nice flurry of punches which dropped Kinslow to his knee, Hurrell pounced and quickly locked in a rear naked choke for the finish.


Paul Marin took out Scott Pooley in the second fight of the night’s first main card offering. After a competitive first round which saw both guys have success on the feet with Marin just edging it, the 2nd round saw Marin complete a takedown and work some ground and pound, before landing a big punch that crumbled Pooley, a few more well placed strikes to the grounded Pooley saw the contest stopped and the Romanian Marin handed a TKO victory.


Next up were the big boys, as heavyweights Pelu Adetola and Darren Stewart met in what turned out to be an impressive showing from Stewart, showcasing his striking game and some good footwork for a heavyweight. After thwarting the takedown attempts of Adetola, Stewart backed up his opponent and landed a solid punch that had Adetola hurt, he then proceeded to unload a series of unanswered knees to the head of Adetola which saw the contest stopped and Stewart walk away with an impressive first round TKO finish.


 Steve McCombe in his contest with Nathaniel Wood. Wood appeared to be the quicker of the two on the feet, and after finding some success threw a right high kick which McCombe blocked with his left arm which freakishly saw the impact snap the northern Irishman’s left forearm in half, leading to McCombe verbally submitting – awarding Wood the victory.


Saul Rogers and Mick Sinclair met next in what turned out to be a gruelling affair as Rogers out grappled Sinclair for the large majority of the fight, Sinclair was unable to defend the repeated takedown attempts of Rogers, who dominated from top control but was unable to land any real significant ground and pound or lock in any fight ending submissions. It was nevertheless a very impressive performance from Rogers who will surely be contesting for the cage warriors world title in the near future.


In what was showcased as the main event of the first main card of the night, Pannie Klanzad faced short notice replacement Eeva Siiskonen for the right to be crowned the inaugural Cage Warriors women’s bantamweight champion.

In an fight that ended up going the full 25 mins, Klanzad in truth dominated in every area, landing takedowns when she needed to, and besting her short notice opponent on the feet with her boxing. It was a valiant effort from Siiskonen as she took the fight the full distance, but was ultimately outmatched as Klanzad proved dominant, winning every round over a game but out-matched Eeva Siiskonen, clinching her the inaugural Cage Warriors women’s bantamweight title.


Main Card 2


The second main card of the night saw Andy Manzolo take on Bola Omoyele. Omoyele started well securing a takedown enjoying a sustained period on top in mount but couldn’t capitalise on the position before the end of the round. The second round saw both guys appearing to be a bit too tentative on the feet, then after Omoyele’s attempted takedown was reversed, Manzolo ended up on top attempting a kimura then an armbar before the bell rang. In the third round Manzolo secures a takedown on now clearly tiring Omoyele, who after defending the rear naked choke attempt by Manzolo offered up little resistance to the subsequent ground and pound, giving the referee no choice but to step in and stop the contest.


Tom Breese faced Thibaud Larchet in the second fight of the second main card of the night. In what was a closely fought first round, Breese ending up on top towards the end of the round but was unable to secure the guillotine. The second round started out competitive with more of the same. both fighters trading a takedown a piece, Breese almost locked in a triangle off of his back and finished the round with strong ground and pound. The third round saw Breese winding up on top again, this time though he made the most of the position and moved to lock in a fight-ending rear naked choke.


Next up Sean Carter and Tim Wilde met in what turned out to be an exciting contest, Wilde dropped Carter early in the first round with a big right hand but after following him down to the mat was unable to capitalise, Wilde showed why he had the majority of the crowd on his side as he pushed forward aggressively landing some good punches on Carter. The second round saw more of the same as Wilde pushed forward throwing strikes, after landing a flurry of punches and backing Carter up to the cage he chose to go for a takedown, which Carter capitalised on, where from his back he quickly locked in a triangle choke which brought about the tap from Wilde.


The co-main event saw Julien Boussuge take on Joseph Duffy in what turned out to be a very quick nights work for the Irishman, at only 36 seconds into the fight Duffy anticipated the level change from Boussuge, and met the Boussuge’s head with his knee as he ducked down and came in, accentuating the impact, knocking the Frenchman out. It was a perfectly timed knee from Duffy, about as sweet a connection as you can make.


The main event of the night saw Nicolas Dalby attempt to defend his title for the first time as he faced the Norwegian Mohsen Bahari in what turned out to be a hard fought victory for the champion, as early on in the fight the challenger Bahari was finding success in his stand up, landing some big punches which blooded the face of the champion. Dalby though very wisely utilized his wrestling, securing takedowns and controlling the dangerous Bahari on the ground, where he landed some good ground and pound and worked Bahari from top position for a large portion of the fight. Ultimately it was the takedowns that got it done for Dalby as he mixed in his striking with well timed shots to win every round on the judges scorecards, but it was by no means an easy victory, Bahari showed great heart and courage with a never give attitude that must of surely won him some new fans.


Dalby though remained the Cage Warriors welterweight champion, and remained undefeated, to top off an excellent night of mixed martial arts action from Europe’s leading MMA promotion.



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